This posting was written this year by a student in my Baseball and Statistics class at Quinnipiac University. If you have a story about a special baseball relationship with someone in your family please email the story to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of the first things my dad and I bonded over was our love for baseball. As far as I can remember I was having a catch with my dad. Every day he would throw me pop flies until it was dark out, and then I still wanted to play some more. Even after a long day of baseball my dad would roll me ground balls in our basement. My dad’s glove got so worn out; he laced it together with zip ties. For some strange reason he refused to buy a new one. He would truly do whatever it took to make me happy. My room was a Yankees blue with Yankees memorabilia all over it. One of my first articles of clothing was a Yankees shirt. When I was younger, and when tickets were more accessible, my dad and I would make at least 10 trips to the old Yankee stadium per year. One of my most memorable trips with my dad was when we met David Cone and Joe Torre. I was star-struck, but my dad talked to these guys like they were old pals. My dad and I talked about the Yankees every day. We stayed up for extra-inning games (he wouldn’t let me stay up when the Yankees played in a different time zone). I remember waking my dad up in the middle of the night to watch Roger Clemens get his 300th career win. I believe if my dad was the Yankees manager, they would have won even more World Series titles. In 2009 when the Yankees won the World Series (this was the first World Series where I was truly old enough to realize the magnitude of them winning); we didn’t jump around and scream. We just hugged each other. It was just us watching together. We were just happy we got to see it by each other’s side.
My dad passed away a few weeks ago, and it has been an empty part of my life not being able to talk about the Yankees with him. My dad took a few things to the grave with him. One being a Yankees’ jersey that my family and I signed along with touching letters we wrote to him, and another a throwback 1961 World Series hat (the year my dad was born) that I bought him for his 50th birthday. Watching the Yankees won’t be the same without enjoying them with my dad, but I know he is yelling and screaming at a TV in heaven watching the games.